Do You Need a CRB Check?

A CRB check is the abbreviation for a Criminal Records Bureau check and as the name suggests, it was usually requested when an employer wanted to check whether a job applicant had a criminal record. This would allow employers to make a more fact-driven decision when considering applicants. These days, and while they are often still referred to, there’s no such thing as a CRB check. It has been replaced with what is know as a DBS check, a Disclosure and Barring Service check, and there are actually three different versions of this new check.

When it comes to finding employment, many may not even consider applying for a DBS check. Although only some roles require applicants to have a DBS check, these roles are scattered across a number of different sectors. As such, it can be a good idea to make some enquiries about the sector you wish to work in, and whether your role will require a DBS check.

What Kind of Roles Require a DBS Check?

Whether a role requires a DBS check depends on the nature of the role and who the person will be working with. For example, those who will be working with vulnerable people and children will need to undergo a DBS check. Often those working within the financial sector will also need to provide employers with a DBS check.

Generally roles that will see people subjected to sensitive material, money or vulnerable people will require applicants to undergo a DBS check to ensure that they are suitable for the role.

When Should I Apply For a DBS Check?

There is no problem applying for roles before applying for a DBS check, but it’s always worth checking to see whether you need to provide your own, or whether the business will pay for one on your behalf.

Evidently, if you’re looking to work within a certain sector, such as becoming a foster carer, then it can be a good idea to get a DBS check carried out in the first instance. There are a number of companies a person can opt to use, including the following:
Excellent customer service is partnered with a fast and reliable service and easy-to-use platform, meaning that carrying out a criminal check is an easy and stress-free affair.
The CRBS offers a straightforward solution for those who rarely have time to themselves. Registered with the DBS and Disclosure Scotland, the CRBS is able to offer enhanced, standard and basic DBS checks.
Disclosure Services serves as an umbrella company for the Disclosure and Baring Service, Disclosure Scotland and Access NI to provide criminal record checks across England, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
An easy application process is matched with a professional and friendly service, meaning CRB Check Online is able to provide businesses with one of the most up-to-date portals in the UK.

Overall, not every role requires a DBS check, and not everyone will need a DBS check for every role they undertake. However, it does pay to research as to whether your desired role or career will require one, as the sooner you have one, the quicker your application process will be. If you have an up-to-date DBS check in your possession, you can also add this to your CV and send it to prospective employers.

Becoming a Freelancer

working-freelanceOne of the biggest changes in the job markets in recent years has been the rise of the freelancer. Nearly five million people in the UK are now registered as a freelancer in one profession or another and this number looks set to continue. There are a lot of positives to being your own boss but there are also a few points to remember to keep your view of the potential career realistic.

The good stuff

If you are in a job where you dread Sunday night because Monday morning follows it or you are sick of your time being dominated by office politics then you are likely one of the growing group of people who have instead become freelancers. While working practices are changing, many companies still have old fashioned ideas and approaches that care little for the health and mental well being of their staff – so these staff are another group considering a change of direction.

The biggest benefits for many people are the flexibility of working hours, the ability to work at home or where you want and the lack of a tyrannical boss. You do need a certain mind-set to work under these conditions – self-discipline for one and an ability to motivate yourself is another.

Setting yourself up

There are a few steps to take to set yourself up as a freelancer once you know what kind of work you are going to do. First you need to register as self-employed with HMRC. They will advise you about paying tax and your National Insurance with the tax year running from 6h April to 5th April the next year.

From day one, make sure you keep accurate records of all the money you make and your outgoings. It is often well worth getting a professional accountant with expert IR35 knowledge to help with this as not only will they ensure you pay your taxes correctly and don’t get into trouble, they will also see if you are entitled to any tax breaks or other expenses you can claim for. They will also advise if you need to register for VAT (usually if your annual turnover is over £83,000) and if you should be a limited company or just a sole trader.

Part of keeping accurate records involves having a business bank account so this is another important step. Most banks offer special business accounts with debit cards and other basic features with many offering free banking for a period of a year or two. Insurance may also be needed depending on what you do and if you have any business premises.

Finding work

It can be a bit terrifying when you realise that if you don’t get work, you don’t get paid and that a week off paid is a thing of the past. But if you get yourself organised, have a portfolio or a CV that will attract attention and make use of the various freelance websites that are available to help you find work, it can be surprisingly how quickly it all starts to come together and you join the ranks of the happily self-employed.